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November 03, 2004
First visit to Paradise Primary

Today I visited a primary school, in the company of the man who runs the London bit of Volunteer Reading Help. I am fixed up to help a couple of children with their reading etc., two afternoons a week, for about half an hour each.

For the time being I will refer to this place as Paradise Primary, because frankly, that is how it struck me. Maybe that pseudonym will change, but my guess is that it won't need to. (Maybe there will be times when it is a bit ironic.) The place has a website, and is crammed with photogenic stuff, the most photogenic things of all being, of course, the children. But for reasons I need not elaborate on, there will be no link to the website, and certainly and absolutely no photos. Quite apart from anything else, I have just signed a Confidentiality Agreement. Suffice it to say that I am looking forward to doing this very much, and am already sure that it will massively improve my understanding of the realities of education in London, which is, educationally, one of the most fascinating places in the world, what with all the different cultures and ethnic groups that are here represented.

Acronyms abound in education, much as they do in Tom Clancy novels. (CINCLANT, SACEUR, DEFCON, etc.) So, for instance, today, they gave me an information sheet about Paradise Primary which listed the Head Teacher, the School Secretary, and something called the SENCO. The School Secretary guards the front door of Paradise Primary and the person I will check in and out with every time I visit. And the SENCO is, approximately, and assuming that I heard it right and am remembering it right, the Special Educational Needs Coordinator.

Already, I am learning.

Posted by Brian Micklethwait at 10:03 PM
Category: Brian's brilliant teaching career
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Comments

Greetings from California. You may want to consider visiting here:

http://www.dys-add.com/index.html

http://www.ldonline.org/ld_indepth/resource-guide.html

and

http://www.schwablearning.org/index.asp

if some of your students don't seem to "get" reading.

Comment by: liz on November 10, 2004 05:05 AM
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